Jesus Christ plays the pivotal and central role, not only in the events of end times bible prophecy, but all events in past, present, and future human history.
For the Old Testament prophets, Jesus of Nazareth offers confirmation of the Law and completion of God's promise through His fulfillment of prophecy:
Jesus of Nazareth, did not come into the world to create a new way of thinking or a new religious order.
He came to fulfill the promises of the Old Testament...
So who is Jesus of Nazareth? And why do we call Him Jesus Christ?
The New Testament provides valuable insight:
The Word existed from the very beginning, and through the Word, all things were made. Jesus is nothing less than the Creator in human form.
Paul attested to this in his letter to the Colossians:
Critics will argue that these statements come from followers of Jesus and not the man Himself.
So what did Jesus Christ say in regard to who He was?
To find out, an important Old Testament reference is necessary...
When Moses talked to God in the burning bush, here's how their conversation went:
God referred to Himself as "I AM."
So how did Jesus refer to Himself?
In answering His critics, Jesus also referred to Himself as "I AM":
The crowd clearly recognized Jesus?s claim to be God, because they picked up stones to stone Him:
The crowd in the Temple did not recognize Jesus as the Creator. In fact, most of the world did not:
And even today, most of the world does not recognize the Creator. Yet, the evidence of His identity is clear and inarguable.
Because the identity of Jesus Christ is confirmed through His fulfillment of ancient prophecies never fulfilled by any other individual, prophecies no present or future person could ever fulfill...
So what are the Messianic prophecies?
The Messianic prophecies are a number of prophecies made by the Old Testament prophets. These prophecies foretell the coming of a Redeemer, a world Savior who will wash away the sins of the world, perform miracles, and eventually, reign as King of the earth.
And He's known as the Messiah.
Here's a few examples of the Messianic prophecies:
According to Isaiah, the Messiah will be a Redeemer who will buy back those who have turned from their sins.
The prophet continues:
According to Isaiah, the Messiah will be pierced for our rebellion and crushed for our sins. We will be healed and made whole because He is whipped and beaten.
In addition, He will perform unprecedented miracles:
When the Messiah appears, He will make the blind see, the deaf hear, the lame leap, and the mute sing!
And dozens of other Messianic prophecies are woven throughout the Old Testament.
So who is the Messiah?
Who Fulfills the Messianic Prophecies?
Does anyone meet the criteria established by the Old Testament prophets?
Only one person fulfills the Old Testament Messianic prophecies...
Jesus of Nazareth.
The space alotted here doesn't allow for a comprehensive examination of each Messianic prophecy, but an in-depth look at the Messianic prophecies as fulfilled by Jesus is available elsewhere on this site.
That said, let's look at one example of an Old Testament Messianic prophecy:
According to the Book of Psalms, the Messiah's enemies will stare at Him and gloat. In addition, they will divide His clothes among themselves and throw dice for His garments.
Does this prophecy apply to Jesus of Nazareth?
As recorded in the Book of John:
The enemies of Jesus Christ stared at Him and gloated while He hung from the cross, and Roman soldiers who oversaw the crucifixion divided His clothes among themselves, while throwing dice for His robe rather than dividing it.
Think that's just a coincidence?
Maybe it's also a coincidence that Jesus appeared on the world stage in the exact timeframe of history the Old Testament prophets predicted the Messiah would appear...
As previously stated, you can view a more in-depth list of Messianic prophecies on this page.
This page features 39 Messianic prophecies. If each of prophecy is given only a 50/50 probability of occurence in the life of one individual, then the odds of one individual fulfilling all 39 prophecies is:
1 in 549,755,813,900
That's 1 in more than 549 billion, with a "b".
There's less than 7 billion people in the world today, the most in human history.
And yet, Jesus of Nazareth fulfilled all 39 of those prophecies with precision accuracy.
Think there's a chance He might be the Old Testament's prophesied Messiah?
The Old Testament Messianic prophecies are clear.
Jesus of Nazareth is the Messiah, also known as the Christ.
He is the Lamb of God spoken of by Isaiah:
Isaiah 53 reveals the purpose of the coming of Jesus of Nazareth. He came not to judge the world, but to save it.
God became flesh, and laid down His life as a sacrifice for you and for me.
As Paul explains in his letter to the Romans:
Peter reiterates Paul's position:
Jesus Christ paid the price of sin once and for all through His death on the cross. As a result, our sins are washed away, and we are able to be counted as righteous in the eyes of God.
Why the Lamb of God is Necessary
So why is it necessary for Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God to wash away our sins?
Paul provides us with insight:
Since we are all sinners, we need to realize:
The wages of sin is death, so as sinners, we are all sentenced to death. This is a penalty that must be paid for our sin.
Jesus Christ chose to pay the penalty for our sin with His own life. By shedding His blood on the cross, He made our purification possible:
Blood, given in exchange for our life, makes our purification possible.
The Book of Hebrews confirms this:
So the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross is necessary for cleansing of sin.
In the Old Testament, the prophet Zechariah relayed God's promise to make a covenant, sealed with blod, to free us from sin:
Because of the covenant Jesus Christ made with us, sealed with His blood on the cross, He has freed us from death in a waterless dungeon.
Jesus: The Gate Into Heaven
Without the blood of Christ to atone for our sin, all of humanity would be sentenced to eternity in hell. But, because He gave His life as a sacrifice, we are able to enter the presence of God and dwell in heaven.
This is the only way a man can enter heaven.
As Jesus Himself states:
One cannot enter heaven any other way than through Jesus. He is the gate:
For God has reconciled the world with Himself through the physical death of Jesus Christ:
As such, without the blood of Christ, no reconciliation exists between God and man.
As a result...
In other words, if you don't accept the blood of Jesus Christ as payment for your sin, then you're taking on responsibility for making that payment yourself.
And since the wages of sin is death, you can not have life without the blood of Jesus Christ.
The Unfulfilled Messianic Prophecies
While the birth, death, and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth fulfilled countless Old Testament Messianic prophecies, some remain unfulfilled.
"Aha!," skeptics will say. "This proves Jesus is not the Messiah."
Not so fast...
Jesus fulfilled all the prophecies of His First Coming to the very letter. The remaining unfulfilled prophecies regard His Second Coming.
And remember, the resurrected Jesus Christ is still alive and living, ready to fulfill these prophecies in the near future.
As the Book of Acts points out:
One day, Jesus Christ will return from heaven in the manner in which He ascended. And numerous unfulfilled Messianic prophecies foretell on this day.
More than 2,600 years ago, the prophet Ezekiel revealed the following:
Just as Ezekiel foretold, the eastern gateway to the Temple has been sealed shut, and only the Messiah Himself will be able to go through the entry room of the gateway.
As detailed in The Messiah's Gate, this will happen on the day Jesus Christ returns to earth.
This is the day Jesus described to His disciples:
Jesus promises that one day we will see Him coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
Christ Is Coming
Knowing Jesus Christ is essential to understanding the end times.
An end times viewpoint that doesn't place Jesus Christ at the center is one that's devoid of hope.
And in the terrible times to come, nothing will be more valuable to fallen mankind than the hope offered by Jesus Christ.
The pain and suffering slated for our future will be excruciating, but just like the pains of labor, the pain will ultimately end in happiness.
So don't put your hope in this world. Put your hope in Jesus Christ, who will not disappoint.
He's calling you now:
Britt Gillette is the founder of End Times Bible Prophecy and the author of Coming To Jesus and Signs Of The Second Coming. Receive his book 7 Signs of the End Times for FREE when you sign up for his monthly newsletter.
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